The iconic 1 Albert Street, easily recognisable thanks to its unique finned design, and commanding corner presence, was awarded the top prize of Best Commercial Property at the recent Property Council Industry Awards on Friday night.
A property much loved by its tenants, the team who rejuvenated the 1972 beauty were on hand to accept the win acknowledging the challenges of the project that they overcame to bring the building to a 100 per cent New Building Standard (NBS) rating for seismic resilience and brought about the ultimate outcome of seeing the building fully leased.
In 2018 owner Auckland Real Estate made the decision to refurbish the building and, at the same time, implement the spaces needed for its new way of working concept, Alberts. Working with the original architect Neville Price, the project team of Ignite Architects, DCF Management, Complete Construction, Agile Engineering Consultants, Stephen Mitchell Engineers, Oculus Architectural Engineering, Rawlinsons Ltd, CTRL Space and Crossfire, the team stripped back the layers added in the 80s and 90s and sought a design that exposed some of the original, simplistic lines of the building.
The project was delivered in four stages, the base build, interior fit-out, west extension and upper-level office refurbishments. During this time, the team had to navigate the global pandemic, a building fire and 18 building consents. The strategy was to minimise demolition where possible to ensure the originality of the property remained, whilst modernising the building.
Judge Andrew Evans, chief Judge Property Industry Awards said, “The primary design response relocates the main entrance from Albert Street to Fanshawe Street, establishing a prominent new lobby, with the dramatic end walls of the tower re-ground. Ultimately the original horizonal podium line has been reinstated. 1 Albert’s rejuvenation supports the return of vibrancy to the precinct and retains an iconic piece of Tamaki Makaurau’s CBD heritage.”
Property Council chief executive Leonie Freeman added, “The team behind 1 Albert Street have delivered a project that gives a new lease of life to this prominent building, adding huge value as an investment to its inhabitants and to the wider precinct.”